Monday, October 8, 2012

Curried Pumpkin and Squash Soup Paired with 2010 Fox Run Vineyards Finger Lakes Riesling


With the onset of cooler weather comes pumpkins and all the fine squash family members.  The cooler weather also proclaims the start of soup season...at least in my mind.  Although I love the refreshing cold soups of summer, the luscious soups of fall and winter are always welcome on my table.

Today I made curried pumpkin soup from a couple of pumpkin varieties and a little help from an acorn squash.  Curried pumpkin (or squash) soup is easy, makes the house smell wonderful, and is quite rewarding when paired with a beautiful Riesling like the 2010 Fox Run Vineyards Finger Lakes Riesling.  Using a curried approach to pumpkin makes the wine pairing easy.  Just ask any of your Indian friends and you will find that Rieslings and Gewurztraminers are routine.

Making this soup is easy.  Start by selecting a pumpkin, or a couple of varieties as I did.  Clean the pumpkin then cut into cubes about two inches square (rectangles are fine too!).  Cut enough to completely cover two sheet pans then slice two onions to fill in any remaining holes.  The pumpkin should be placed skin side down.  Season with salt and pepper and place in a 400 degree preheated oven for 20 minutes.  Switch positions (top to bottom) of the sheet pans, and continue to roast for another 25 minutes.

When done roasting, the pumpkin should be fork tender.  Harvest the flesh from and add to a 4 or 5 quart soup pot (including the roasted onions).  Add 32 ounces of chicken broth (vegetable broth works fine as well), 1 tablespoon curry powder and a can of coconut milk.  Stir and bring to temperature over medium heat.  Finally, puree the mixture with a submersion blender, adjust seasoning, ladle into bowls, and garnish with finely sliced scallions.

Now you are ready to enjoy the wonderful magic of Riesling and curry.  For this pairing, I chose one of two successful approaches; medium sweet with good acidity.  The 2010 Fox Run Vineyards Finger Lakes Riesling is delightfully balanced with a touch of sweetness and healthy acidity complementing the citrus, honey, and stone fruit flavors.  This wine has a wonderful nose of apricot and tropical fruits that make it difficult to delay a first sip.  It is inviting to say the least.

When pairing with curry, Riesling reigns.  However, be careful of Riesling that are too sweet.  Either a dry Riesling with strong acidity, or a medium sweet would be a good choice.  The 2010 Fox Run Vineyards Finger Lakes Riesling offered the best of both worlds - mild sweetness and refreshing acidity.  Just right.

In vino veritas, buen provecho.

Craig

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